Those with a urinary catheter that is indwelling as well as those who intermittently catheterize themselves are at increased risk of urinary tract infection. The former group has a higher risk than the latter. A catheter increases the chance that bacteria can track up into the bladder. Certain things will help to lower the risk when using an indwelling catheter.
- Clean around the urethra every day
- Keep the catheter clean
- Clean your anal area after a bowel movement
- Always keep the catheter bag lower than your bladder so the urine doesn’t back track.
- Empty the bag regularly
- Wash your hands before and after you empty the bag
- Have the catheter changed regularly depending on what your doctor recommends.
For Intermittent catheter use:
- Use a new catheter each time
- Wash your hands before and after using the catheter
- Wash the area surrounding the urethra thoroughly
- Use proper lubrication
- Keep your bladder relatively empty by performing the catheterization 4 to 6 times a day